Approximately 1,000 new units of affordable rental housing will be built in Vancouver on seven acres of city-owned land in the next three years, the city has announced.
The announcement was made on Friday by Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson, and the CEO of the Vancouver Affordable Housing Agency (VAHA), Luke Harrison.
The sites will be developed by Community Land Trust (CLT) and be targeted to singles and families earning between $30,000 and $80,000 annually.
The announcement represents the largest one-time municipal land investment into the community housing sector in all of Canada, the city noted.
“Today is a big day for over 2,000 Vancouver residents who want to put down roots in our city but are struggling to find long-term affordable housing,” said Robertson. “This is the latest step we have taken to make sure that people with low to middle incomes can find a home and build a future in our city.”
Robertson also congratulated Community Land Trust, saying that he’s happy to have them on board as partners “in providing these new homes for people who live and work in Vancouver.”
Approved this week by Vancouver City Council, CLT was chosen as the successful proponent of a Request for Proposal sent out by VAHA seeking a partner to develop the seven sites into affordable rental housing.
CLT will design, build, finance, operate and maintain the seven sites of city-owned land across Vancouver. The value of the seven sites is approximately $130 million.
Non-profit operators, including Atira Women’s Resource Society, McLaren Housing Society, and Fraserview Housing Co-operative will work with CLT to manage the buildings once complete.
“We are thrilled to be partnering with VAHA and the city in this unprecedented opportunity to increase the supply of affordable housing in Vancouver,” said Thom Armstrong, executive director of the Co-op Housing Federation of BC and the Community Land Trust.
“This historic partnership with the CLT and the community housing sector will create a legacy of affordable homes we can all be proud of in neighbourhoods throughout the city.”
It is anticipated the first building will break ground by the end of 2018 and be complete within two years. All 1,000 new units are expected to be built and ready for occupancy by 2021. The full list of sites includes:
The CLT is a non-profit society established by the Co-operative Housing Federation of BC to acquire, hold and develop land for homes that are permanently affordable for a broad range of households and incomes.
Land held in the community land trust is removed from the market forever, ensuring that it will always create affordable places for people to call home. The CLT is the largest community land trust delivering affordable housing in Western Canada.
With this recent announcement, CLT, the City and VAHA are now working together on 12 sites, delivering over 1,500 affordable homes to residents of Vancouver. The CLT recently opened two buildings in Vancouver, delivering 183 new homes. An additional 310 homes are under construction and will open later this year.
VAHA is the largest developer of affordable housing in Vancouver, working with the city and partners to deliver 2,400 new units of affordable rental housing on 20 city-owned sites.